Photo by Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDER
Today the Nats will try and avoid being swept for the first time this season.
There are no surprises with the Nationals lineup, Kurt Suzuki is in at catcher. The team called up Jhonatan Solano this morning so look for him in the dugout.
Updates to come...
ATLANTA BRAVES at WASHINGTON NATIONALS
Where: Nationals Park
Gametime: 1:35 p.m. EDT
TV: MASN, MLB.tv
Radio: WJFK (106.7 FM)
Weather: Sunny, 63 degrees, Wind 10 mph out to RF
CF Denard Span
RF Jayson Werth
CF Bryce Harper
3B Ryan Zimmerman
1B Adam LaRoche
SS Ian Desmond
2B Danny Espinosa
C Kurt Suzuki
LHP Gio Gonzalez
CF B.J. Upton
RF Jason Heyward
LF Justin Upton
C Evan Gattis
2B Dan Uggla
1B Chris Johnson
SS Andrelton Simmons
3B Ramiro Pena
LHP Paul Maholm
HP Bill Welke
1B Brian O'Nora
2B Adrian Johnson
3B Fielden Culbreth (cc)
10:35 a.m. -- Here are at Nationals Park where we should be talking to the players soon. I will pass along anything I can find out about Wilson Ramos' hamstring injury.
11:54 a.m. -- The Nats officially placed Ramos on the 15-day disabled list this morning and called up Jhonatan Solano from Syracuse. Read about his call-up right here.
1:52 p.m. -- Not the start the Nats wanted this afternoon as the Braves put three on the board in the first inning. They began with a leadoff double by B.J. Upton on the first pitch of the game. Evan Gattis sent him home with a double off the wall and then Chris Johnson added two more RBI with a single up the middle. Gio at 28 pitches (17 strikes) already.
2:01 p.m. -- The Nats got a guy on with Jayson Werth walking for the first time this season, but fail to score after two ground outs. Harper reached first because of a fielder's choice to get Werth out at second. Zimmerman then grounded out to end the inning. Maholm threw 14 pitches with nine of them srikes.
2:08 p.m. -- Much better outing for Gio in the top of the second with a 1-2-3 frame. He struck out Maholm looking on a fastball down the middle then got B.J. Upton to ground out and Heyward to fly out. Heyward hit a ball to deep center that Span caught about five feet from the wall. Yesterday he did the same thing several times. Gio at 41 pitches (24 strikes).
2:17 p.m. -- The Nats got two men on after two quick outs in the bottom of the second. Espinosa took a fastball off his right hand to take first. He stayed in the game, but looked like he was in pain. Suzuki then singled to right field. A groundout by Gio was the third out to end the inning. Maholm at 30 pitches (20 strikes)
2:35 p.m. -- This is officially getting ugly. Justin Upton led the inning off with a home run to right field. The Braves then added three more on a Andrelton Simmons home run to left. Gonzalez has allowed 7 ER, his career high was 11 ER vs. the Twins in 2009. His high as a Nationals pitcher was last season vs. the Mets on July 19 with 6 ER. No one is up in the 'pen with Gio at 74 pitches.
2:41 p.m. -- Another inning with nothing going for the Nats at the plate. Not only are the Braves' bats hot right now, pitcher Paul Maholm has still yet to allow a run this season. After the bottom of the third he's at 15 2/3 innings this season without allowing a run. He's thrown 40 pitches so far.
2:47 p.m. -- Gio set down the top of the Braves' order in the fourth, needing just ten pitches. He's at 84 on the day and no one is up in the bullpen, Gio may be out there for another inning we'll see.
2:55 p.m. -- No one gets on for the Nats who have seen only 53 pitches from Maholm through four. One note for the fifth inning: Steve Lombardozzi is in to play second, replacing Espinosa. We'll see if it relates to the HBP Espinosa took off his right hand.
3:02 p.m. -- Gio let up a single to Chris Johnson who is now 3-for-3 on the day, but that's it in the top of the fifth. The Nats lefty is due up third in the bottom of the fifth and is likely done after throwing 98 pitches. Zach Duke is getting ready in the bullpen.
3:21 p.m. -- Two more on the board for Atlanta after an RBI double by Heyward and a sac fly by Gattis. Duke has not started this season off well with 7 ER through his first 4 2/3 innings.
3:28 p.m. -- Nats go down in order as Maholm extends his scoreless inning streak to 18 2/3. He has thrown 83 pitches today through six.
3:40 p.m. -- 1-2-3 for the Nats in the bottom of the seventh as Maholm continues to groove through the Washington order. That's seven scoreless innings of two-hit ball with 96 pitches thrown. Still 9-0 Braves.
4:05 p.m. -- The Nats finally see some action at the plate by loading the bases and forcing Maholm out of the game. Reliever Luis Avilan, however, stopped the bleeding and kept the Nats off the board. Maholm exits with a 20 2/3 scoreless inning streak to begin the season.
4:16 p.m. -- On to the bottom of the ninth with LaRoche due up to start. Still 9-0 Braves with Cory Gearrin in to pitch.
4:20 p.m. -- That's the ballgame folks, 9-0 Brave over Nats your final score.